LIV Golf Adelaide: Greg Norman declares victory, ‘feels sorry for the ignorant’

LIV Golf just concluded its wildly popular event in Adelaide, Australia.

The all-Aussie team led by Cam Smith, Ripper GC, won the team portion of the event and Brendan Steele of HyFlyers GC won the individual title. But that had very little to do with why the event was considered a success.

Television ratings were up, particularly in Australia per TV Tonight. The event also set an attendance record with nearly 100,000 patrons over the course of three days.

Afterward, LIV CEO Greg Norman joined Golf Digest Australia to speak on the success. While he did avoid going so far as to say he felt vindicated, Norman did manage to poke the bear regardless.

“Vindication is not the right word,” Norman said.

“It’s the ignorance of others who simply didn’t understand what we were trying to do. I actually feel sorry for them because they now see the true value of LIV Golf and want to be a part of it.”

LIV Adelaide: Day 3, Greg Norman, Marc Leishman, Cam Smith

LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman congratulates Marc Leishman and Cam Smith
Photo by Asanka Ratnayake/Getty Images

It is unclear exactly who these “others” are that now supposedly see the value of LIV Golf.

Fans packed in the Grange Golf Club, but on a relative scale. This LIV event is most commonly compared to the WM Phoenix Open on the PGA Tour.

That event generally draws between 300,000 and 400,000 fans. Of course, the television ratings for the Phoenix Open are also exponentially higher than anything LIV Golf has ever received.

It is very possible that Norman was simply swept up in emotion. After all, Australia is his birth nation and to see the relative success happen on home soil, it created a sense of pride.

“The support Australia gave me during my own playing career for decades was something I have never forgotten,” says Norman. “It’s why I brought LIV Golf back home – I did it for them. The people have well and truly spoken.”

Some truly wild scenes played out this week in Adelaide.

A fan chucked a water bottle, hitting a caddie in the head sending him to the ground. Fans in attendance were given incredible access to the golfers themselves, getting so close they could hug them.

It is certainly a different experience than what PGA Tour fans are used to.

Norman, being the most vocal supporter of the Saudi-backed league, has seen his name dragged in the mud. Yet, he remains undeterred.

“With what we’ve [LIV Golf] gone through over the past 16 months, both as a league and what I’ve copped personally… the hatred… this makes it all worthwhile.”

Following the framework agreement in June 2023 between the PGA Tour and the Saudi Public Investment Fund (LIV Golf’s beneficiary), it appeared LIV was on its last leg.

But there has since been very little traction toward a deal. Even if a deal is eventually reached, all signs point to the existence of LIV well into the future.

Kendall Capps is the Senior Editor of SB Nation’s Playing Through. For more golf coverage, follow us @_PlayingThrough on all major social media platforms.

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